This is what I always tell all my athletes, and I do listen to own advice, thankfully...

Monday the bike goes in for a post winter service, no problems, just want it to be running in tip top (best) condition for China. That evening I have a voicemail, "Tom, I don't know how to say this, so I wont, you needed to come into the shop". A tad dramatic but this clearly is not good. To cut a long story short, and through many ups and downs, I was on the look out for a new bike with 2 weeks to go before the race - but luckly that is time enough to fix anything!

I got back in contact with Kinetic One, a shop who I had raced for in the past, to see if they might be able to help me out. Incredibly Andy offered to sort me out with a bike for China. I picked it up yesterday, 8 days our from China (3 days before I leave), and rode it the 30 miles home to settle in and I couldn't be happier.

Kinetic One pride themselves on their bike fitting and it felt like I had never been off the bike, the set up was so precise. The bike felt very stiff and the power transfer was great - I am not the best climber but I really noticed a big difference on the hills.

I know everytime someone picks up an exciting new sponsor they rave about their product/service etc, so how do you know what they are really thinking..... Even though I haven't been working with Kinetic One for 3 years now, in that time I have been sending athletes I coach there for the great service and bikes they offer. It is a product and service I really believe in and I'm confident I will be working with the more officially in the future.

And in the meantime, always get your bike serviced 3 weeks before a big race as anything can be fixed in that time, and it may even work out for the better.